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Washington Journal

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Us 33, U.s. 24, Afghanistan 23, Washington 13, New York 11, America 9, Iraq 8, United States 8, Nato 7, Heather 7, Bush 6, Pennsylvania 6, Chicago 6, Underemployed 6, Florida 6, Steve 5, Ted Copple 4, Greg 4, China 4, Islam 4,
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  CSPAN    Washington Journal    News/Business. Journalists and  
   policy-makers take viewer questions; newspaper articles.  

    September 12, 2010
    7:00 - 9:59am EDT  

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afghanistan. following that discussion, a look at the under employment rates. the washington journal is next. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] >> i think capturing and killing bin laden would be extremely important to our national security. it doesn't solve all our problems, but it remains a high priority of this administration. >> good morning. on this weekend of remembrance, the president friday on bin laden. yesterday, time magazine posted this piece nine years after 9/11, is al qaeda's threat overrated? and today in the "washington post" editorial page, ted copple with his thoughts
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saying, let's stop playing into bin laden's hands. it is a back to work week for members of congress, the president discussing education tuesday in a speech in philadelphia and back on the campaign trail when he heads to connecticut. secretary of state clinton. and some other headlines on this sunday morning, the "new york times" writing about john boehner tightly bound to d.c. lobbyists. and the tea party stirs up the delaware primary which is scheduled for tuesday, and the new york daily news nine years of tears. al qaeda and bin laden our focus. the piece this morning in the "washington post," stop playing into bin laden's hands. the numbers are on the bottle of your screen. -- bottom of your screen.
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two of the headlines the new york daily news, nine years of tears. and from the new york post, battleground, the mosque news mars the saur moanies. and let me read just a couple sections. again, from former abc anchingor, he writes the goal of any organized terrorist attack is to gode a variety of powerful enemies into excessive response. and over the past nine years the u.s. has blundrd into the scenario with one overreaction or another. bin laden needs to be the object of our hoss tilts, national security and contempt and deserves to be taken seriously. but most of what he has achieved we do ourselves. bin laden does not deserve that we even inadvertently fuffleful unimagined dreams. here's more from the president friday at this news conference.
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i think in this day and age there is always going to be the potential for an individual or a small group of individuals, if they are willing to die, to kill other people. some of them are going to be very well organized and some of them are going to be random. that threat is there and it's important, i think, for the american people to understand that and not to live in fear. it's just a reality of today's world that there are going to be threats out there. we have i think greatly improved our homeland security security since 9/11 occurred. you know, i am constantly
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impressed with the dedication that our teams apply to this problem. they are chasing down every threat, not just from al qaeda but from any other actor out there that might be engaging in terrorism. they are making sure that even what might appear to be a lone individual who has very little organizational capacity, if they make a threat, they follow up. but one of the things that i want to make sure we do, as long as i'm president and beyond my presidency, is to understand america's strength in part comes from its resilience. and that we don't start losing who we are or overreacting if
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in fact there is the threat of terrorism out there. >> and you have ted copple saying we continue to overreact. the pittsburgh gazzzet says the scars are healing slowly. and al qaeda's threat is overrated. the piece was written.
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so with that back groupped, we want to get your calls and reaction. we'll begin with georgia on our lines for democrats good morning. caller: good morning. host: are we playing into bin laden's hands? caller: of course. not only are we playing into bin laden's hands, when we look at this terrorism thing, we've got to stop being terrorists, then people will stop terrorizing us. host: and how do you do that? caller: you do that by taking care of your own borders. everybody should have a right to their own sovereign nation, everybody should have a right to equal process of buying and
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selling. if everything was not set up for total destruction and total demise of the human race, we are looking at the human race being destroyed all for love of money. host: thanks for the call. this comment, bin laden has been used as our scape gothe. his capture and killing will make no difference. and, this from the new york daily news. he writes good morning, alan.
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caller: republican and sometimes independent. so i can't say i'm anything but a responsible voter who votes on the issue. host: did you want to respond about bin laden? are you with us? caller: sorry. host: you're on the air. caller: what's happening in this country from my perspective is we've created new institutions. these new institutions need a counter balance and that counter balance is bin laden. if he wasn't there, it would be somebody else. homeland security and our military needs an enemy because it's turned into a business.
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so i really don't think it makes any difference if we capture bin laden or not. we need that institution. host: on our republican line. mark from florida. good morning. caller: hi. i think bin laden dead hopefully he's dead and i think we're doing a pretty good job with the security in the country. that's all i have to say. host: and from time magazine, nine years after 9/11, is al qaeda's threat overrated? from the page of the editorial this morning.
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eric is joining us from chicago. good morning. independent line. caller: i have a comment about that article. i believe we have not reacted as much as should. host: why is that? caller: the reason, because we are dealing with these people like bin laden or so. the only language they understand is the language they use. so i think we've been very reluctant, keeping in mind some people who may share his faith, that if we had reacted more
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strongly, and captured him, it may have been a psychological aspect. i think we should still go there, capture him so that people know that we can reach those people who are the head of, how you can say, the people who really began that organization also. host: he begins the piece with this sentence. bob is joining us on the democrat's line. your take on this. caller: yeah. about nine years after, i was always -- you know, how did those terrorists train in schools over here how to learn how to fly those airliners and
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nobody knew about it? now we find out that, yeah, the f.b.i. was told about it but they said, it never got passed the mid level in the f.b.i. host: this from a viewer. this is of course a weekend of remembrance nine years after the attacks on that tuesday morning. the president attending services at the pentagon and vice president biden was up in new york. and in pennsylvania, the flight that crashed into the hilltop just in the southern part, southwestern part of pennsylvania. first lady michelle obama and former first lady joined together for a memorial service and a tribute to those 40 individuals who died that tuesday morning. here's some of their remarks. >> the men and women of flight 93 were college students, and grand parents, they were
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businessmen, pilots, and flight attendents. there was a writer, an antique dealer, a lawyer, an engineer. they came from all different backgrounds and all walks of life. and they all took a different path to that september morning. but in that awful moment when the facts became clear and they were called to make an impossible choice, they all found the same resolve. they agreed to the same bold plan. they called the people they loved, many of them giving comfort instead of seeking it, explaining they were taking action and that everything would be ok. and then they rose as one. they acted as one.
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and, together, they changed history's course. and in the day that is followed when we learned about the heroes of flight 93 and what they had done, we were proud, we are ahed, we were inspired. but i don't think any of us were really surprised because it was clear that these 40 individuals were no strangers to service and to sacrifice. for them putting others before themselves was nothing new. because they were veterans and coaches and volunteers of all sorts of causes. when this field was marked by smoldering ashes, now there is green grass. but the passage of time cannot erase the images etched in our minds from that calm september morning. we remember the moment the news
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came where we were, and what we were doing. george and i grieved with the families whose loved ones perished on that bright blue morning. we thought about your loss every day that we lived in the white house and your stories remain close to our hearts. george sends his love. and today, we join with all americans as we pause to remember those most affected by that day. host: the comments of two first ladies, laura bush and michelle obama yesterday in pennsylvania. these events are posted on our website at c-span.org. the new york post looking back at ground zero and what it looks like today. the headline is nine years later, finally progress at that site. more than 2800 americans lost their lives. that's our focus.
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also, the time magazine story. nine years after 9/11, is al qaeda's threat overrated? one of our viewers has this comment. patricia joining us on our independent line. good morning. caller: good morning. we are definitely playing into their hands. i just heard your comments that you read off the computer that we should continue fighting aggressively. we're playing into their hands. we need to play what i call in football offensive defense. they're bleeding us dry. we need to make our borders secure, we need to be like australia that checks the backgrounds of everybody that comes into the country, and keeps tabs on those people. and we need to get out of the middle east and get off the
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foreign oil. as long as we are bleeding our economy dry to help them rebuild, we're just not going to get anywhere. we're playing into their hands. host: thanks. we'll go to john who has this comment. next is craig joining us from den ver. republican line. good morning. caller: good morning. not only are we falling into their hands. we're eating out of their hands . candy corn and more. because it's not -- it's -- osama bin laden in the ground zero muslim place, it's not an actual thing that's -- it's just -- i'm so -- it doesn't make sense to me that we would
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be anywhere aside from where we are and where we're going -- le reiterate. host: that's ok. go ahead. caller: oh, god. host: we're still here. go ahead. ok. we'll let you go. thank you for your call and your comment. further into the piece this morning, the outlook section of the "washington post" he writes.
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next is detroit. good morning. caller: good morning. host: go ahead, please. caller: my comment is i think america gets amnearbya from time to time. it was bin laden when the russians went into afghanistan, attacked afghanistan that the c.i.a. got in touch with and him and amadge din, i believe, ran the russians out. he was our friend. he knows all about the c.i.a. it was america that came to saddam hussein's rescue when
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they threw the shah out. who are we kidding? obama doesn't want him caught. it was 19 obamas that came from saudi arabia. host: more this morning in the new york post. the memorial service in the city and also the reflecting pool where governors paid their tribute. also michael bloomberg in attendance. this, from one of our regular tweeters. john joining us. independent line good morning. caller: good morning, sir. i just wanted to say, for example, a lot of people who try to take advantage of this situation for their own personal gains. for example, we have soldiers right now in korea.
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we have soldiers in germany. so it would only stand to reason that, after we leave iraq, we would still have soldiers in iraq. and as far as, for example, our security on our borders, i'm pretty sure in every state in the united states, if you're stopped for any violation or something they think you've done, you have to show your identification. you have to carry your drivers license or what have you pretty much at all times. i think we try to complicate things too much when there are just simple common-sense things that we just try to make it just too -- we overthink things too much sometimes. and i think a lot of it is just for people's propaganda and personal gains. host: thanks for the call.
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montive has this point of view from our twitter page. this from the daily news.
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again, ted ko ppel saying stop playing into bin laden's hands. good morning. caller: good morning, sir. i just wanted to say that i feel for the people that have died, 3,000 people that died several years ago. but it's needless -- for this needless so called war. but we need to look back into history and look at the gulf of tomplekin, another stage attack that was the cat logging event to enable the neo cons to allow hall burtance and other companies to make money on needless wars and suffering in iraq and afghanistan. this was just another false oots tack. end the wars.com has provided plenty of evidence for the c.i.a. or -- c.i.a. created al qaeda in order for us to divide
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the people and to give us flight amongst each other when the real enemy are the banks. host: this from a viewer. the front page of the "new york times" has more from ground zero and lower manhattan and the piece has this headline. joining us from maryland, democrat's line. good morning. caller: good morning. host: you're on the air. caller: yes. we're speaking on the situation
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about bin laden and what the united states truly has to understand is that as long as we're addicted to oil we're always going to have problems with that. they showed us this in 1974. a lot of people don't remember back in the days when you had to have odd and even numbers on your tags to get gas when they took us through the oil embargs of the 70s. as soon as we get off the oil, we won't have these problems with people fighting in their countries. let's talk about that. host: again, tony has the piece in time magazine available on line at time.com. al qaeda, he said, was essentially a diabolical criminal enterprise that should
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not be given the status of a geopolitical status in the order of hitler or stalin. jay joining us from louisville, kentucky. good morning. independent line. caller: yes. i just want to say it was my understanding that bin laden got involved at the very end of the russian war in afghanistan. so he can take no credit for driving the russians out. host: patricia from alabama. good morning, patricia. caller: this is pat. host: i'm sorry. caller: i think the person who is irrelevant now is ted ko ppel along with time magazine. they're all part of the dated, no longer useful media who are trying to make themselves relevant. bin laden is relevant. it's the media and ted who are irrelevant and are trying to
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generate publicity for themselves and their dated useless media. host: thank you for your call and your comments. a couple other stories from the paper this morning. rob is joining us from new york. good morning. independent line.
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caller: hi. how are you? host: fine. thank you. caller: good. the thing that i have to say is that i'm in agreement that al qaeda needs to be monitored and destroyed and whatever we are doing. and we're doing the right thing right now. we're -- host: we're still with you. caller: so technically, i mean, we should continue on the front in afghanistan. i mean, i think we should even be more aggressive with iran. than we have. host: one of our viewers saying. our twitter page is twitter.com/c-span wj if you want to join in.
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of course, long time reporter and now a contributor to the bbc. from the "new york times" this headline, similar headlines in other newspapers. north korea suggesting reunions with the south.
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parg rhett is joining us from charleston, south carolina. good morning. caller: good morning. i just have a small comment to make. i think people forgot about what bin laden had said. and i think he was very successful. he said that he was going to destroy this country, and he did. what people didn't realize at the time, that he was talking about finance. he was very familiar with the united states. he had many friends in this united states. and he knew more than most people because he studied about this country. so the best way to destroy this country was financially. host: ryan from wails, maine. welcome. caller: hello. i just wanted to interject
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basically i'm hoping that people understand that this ideology that this man has spread and his co conspirators is not the ideology of islam at large. and what we need to do is engage with islam at large, with islamic nations that are our allies, and gain support from them to help the other people who have been radicalized turn away from this radical islam that bin laden is spreading. because if we take bin laden out, he's a figure head. there's someone who is the going to step into his place and turn him into a martyr and continue this form of radical islam until we are able to reach out and change it.
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we need to reach out to the young people that they are turning into living weapons in pakistan, and we need to get out there and start giving food to these people and aid to these people. and if it means that the military has to go in and take over these places and aggressively, you know, suppress these radical islamists, then so be it. i'm all for it. but it will not end until that radical form of islam is erased from the face of the earth. host: thanks for the call and the comment. out west, the orange county register.
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greg joining us from new york city, republican line. are we playing into bin laden's hands? caller: well, good morning, sir. and thank you for taking my call. my request with regard to the people that lost their lives and with respect to all. please cease with displaying bin laden in port rate on your screen. and let us focus on the key issue that the united states is founded on respect for all religions and all peoples. i call as a republican and i lost 50 class mates from new york university on that day. and i was there. and i lived with the smell and everything as a forensic tox colings that day. my only request now is to
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respect those that lost their lives and let us build from that and build the world and the nations that we choose to incorporate, and respectfully bin laden is weak. mr. obama, president obama, even though i disagree with his policies, the fundamentals are correct this day. thank you very much. host: thank you. and the president yesterday at the pentagon where he paid tribute to those who lost their lives at the pentagon and on board that american airlines flight.
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now we live in an integrated world where american jobs rely on the economic policies of
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governments in asia or latin america, while security is the whims of a cleric living in a cave. next is a viewer on the democrat's line from cleveland, ohio. good morning. caller: hello. what i would like to say is i feel like it's more of an issue to me about obama and these different types of policies because don't you think that if he could he would do more instead of just using the world's credit card, the u.s. credit cards that max you had up a lot of things for my kids and grandkids that have to pay for it? don't you think that he would do more if he could though? host: ok. we'll go to john in west virginia. your take on this. good morning. caller: hi. i would just like to comment on the fact that -- wait one
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second. sorry. i'd just like to talk about how obama -- host: we'll go to betty next in north carolina. caller: good morning. i just want to say that 9/11 is not the ghost of bin laden day. it's a day where americans want to express their outrage. and we're a free society. we have a right to do that, and we should. when almost 3,000 americans who are not at war are killed, murdered, and the roots go very deep in all this. you know. the muslims are not all out to kill us and we don't live in a fear. we know that their religion has been kidnapped and used by terrorists to fulfill their aims. but 9/11 fits right up there with pearl harbor day and d
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day. and i think we've become crass and say we shouldn't talk about it any more. we've talked about it enough. i think that would be wrong. thank you. host: we'll come back with a few more minutes of your phone calls and then follow that up with our roundtable. our guest on "newsmakers" ares at 10:00 eastern time. and among those questions we focused on, on the president's proposal put forth this past week would allow companies, small businesses and large, to write off 100% of their investments this year and next year. here's part of that roundtable. >> essentially we're getting from the hill from some law makers that it's a pretty tight schedule and might not be a lot of appetite for doing it right now. is it still worth doing if congress can't address it until next year, and would delaying it reduce the effectives in of
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these proposals? >> again, great question. congress does have a lot on its plate, we understand that. and the priorities for them and we support them is first moving the small business bill that's before the senate that's been held up for a while. that's the first order of business when they come back next week. and we hope that gets done quickly. then they have to think about what to do on the bush tax cuts. we understand that. hopefully we'll have some agreement on both those issues, move swiftly, and then they can turn to the president's proposals. but those weren't made with a specific time frame or calendar in mind. they're good policy, they're good proposal. if congress can't get to them in the next few weeks, they're still going to be good policy when congress returns. host: the assistant treasury secretary for tax policy. you can watch the entire interview in two hours. back to your calls and comments.
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the "washington post" outlook section has the piece by ted copple. let's stop playing into bin laden's hands. he writes. one of our viewers on our twitter page. colorado, good morning. on our line for independents. caller: hi. my question mainly is i always hear about bin laden but i've -- i can't find any information on how we are so certain that it is bin laden. did he take credit? and if so, when? is there a video there or did we just find some information that directly pointed to him? host: well, he did take credit. there was that famous video
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that was released a couple months in which he was in an undisclosed location talking about the collapse of the twin towers. that's still available on you tube. caller: he said i was responsible? host: by all accounts al qaeda claimed responsibility. you're theying they're not? caller: i just don't feel that they are. and the reason is because it just seems like if they had been responsible there would have been a much more organized network behind it. it just seemed like it was this small group in afghanistan that somehow pulled off this major operation with lots of funding and that's just how they did it. we didn't hear anything about it. it just showed up one day. host: thanks for the call. from michael goodwin this morning.
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daniel has this comment from our twitter page. some of the photos this morning included in the "new york times" from ground zero and lower manhattan. joined by crs on the phone from connecticut. caller: good morning. thanks for c-span.
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you do good work. except that you separate us between democrats, republicans, and independents. i've been dealing with the issue of islam for a long time. my cousin was the motor boat driver fror the shah of iran. so even before ted i was on to this issue and i agree with him entirely. in indonesia after the tsunami we made so many friends by being a helping hand there that until this silly minister came along, indonesia muslims were quiet about us. they were not anti-american. if we went into pakistan, used their troops from afghanistan, and helped the people who are suffering from this flood which is caused by climate change, we'd make a lot of friends and we'd have bin laden swamped. i mean, they'd just forget him because they'd say america is our friend. we've got to stop this
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sectarianism in the united states. we've turned against if muslims here who are our best allies in helping the pakistanis and in helping muslims all over the world. also, in iran we should support the green revolution. there's no question in my mind that -- and these are shiites. ok? we've also got a problem with sunnis. but we've got to somehow bring it together so that we are not supporting sectarianism. host: thank you for the call. one of the other stories that will likely drive the story this week can be found in the "new york times." eric writing this morning,
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there's an extensive list of some of the contacts, former staffers now working on k street which is where the lobbyists traditionally operate from. we'll have more in our next segment. ed from boston. good morning. is the u.s. playing into bin laden's hands? caller: i don't know. i think he's a red herring.
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if you're familiar with the marine hymn, thomas jefferson and john adams, both went to negotiate with triply, which is lybia, by the way, to stop pillaging our war ships and taking our seamen hostage. we as a young country then for the next 10 or 15 years had to pay tribute of $1 million a year in 1785, dollars, for the people of islam to leave us alone. when they went to negotiate this, all they heard were passages from the koran. this nation is turning into a whole bunch of nelve chamber lynnes, and joe kennedy seniors who wanted to play kate hitler. wake up, america. host: thank you. and joseph has this point from our twitter page.
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we're getting your comments on this piece and related articles and editorials on this sunday morning. pat joining us from maryland. good morning. caller: good morning. i wanted to comment on two things. first of all, bin laden did not -- i agree with the woman two calls ago. he did not take credit, as a matter of fact, he said that he did not have anything to do with 9/11. it wasn't until the rest of the world blamed him for it that he just went along with it. so i think -- host: so who is responsible? caller: i don't know who is responsible. i'm not addressing that. he did not take credit initially. i want to speak to michael goodwin. i think he's taking it personal. i don't know what his position except for reporter is, but i think he's wrong. you've got to remember that
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president obama lived among the muslims. i think he's a very neutral person. and what he is actually trying to do is what is best for this country. host: i appreciate the call and the comment. michael goodwin's piece is appearing this morning in the new york post. cindy saying paul is joining us from new jersey. good morning. caller: good morning. i'd like to say that the dema minister jones created could have been solved very easily by arresting him for endangering american lives and inciting disorder and rioting. then he could have tried to burn the koran from his jail cell. host: thanks for the call and the comment. and for all of you, again, if you want to read more you can log on for the comments. there's also a related editorial about 9/11 that just came up in the weekly standard website. it is sunday morning, september
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12. we'll be back with our roundtable discussion. and later, a look at unemployment and underemployment in the u.s. and the impact in the american economy. we'll be back in a moment. >> the bottom line is that we need our borders secured and we can't afford all the illegal immigration. >> it's hurt us. it's hurt arizona's economy
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seriously. >> with the mid-term elections about 50 days away, follow campaign 2010 on line at the c-span video library with debates from key races across the country. it's easy to follow the candidates and issues any time, all free on your computer. >> here's a look at some of our politics programming today.
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>> you've never even swung at the ball. >> we have to acknowledge that national security includes border security. that's the first job of the federal government and it hasn't been doing its job. i would propose that we build a wall, we secure that border however we can do it. and we do it quickly. there's no reason we can't. but in the absence of the federal government stepping into its constitutional role of providing security along the border, the states ought to be able to do it. i support arizona and the arizona law. i have from the beginning.
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i've read that law. and it's the state's sovereign responsibility to protect its citizens as well. now, one of the other candidates in this race and one of the first debates did not support the arizona law. and that was bill bening. i think we differ on that issue. but going forward, we've got to have a tough immigration policy to make sure that employers who knowingly employ illegal immigrants are punished and that we deport people who are not here legally and make sure that we have a solid immigration policy to allow immigration occur in the way it was meant to do, to bring people into naturalization when they begin the process legally. >> watch our continuing political coverage today at 6:30 and 9:30 p.m. eastern here on c-span. >> washington journal continues. >> and our sunday roundtable with two familiar faces. welcome back to both of you.
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thanks for being with us. >> good to be with you. >> let me begin with you because boats of you are blogging. you are for the hill and youor for the reports. you said most of the discussions on the president's iraq speech focused on the political importance and the policy but we should not undervalue its nonpolitical importance to the american psyche. how so? >> i think it's important whether you're democrat, republican, conservative, liberal, to mark the end of this phase in iraq. it's been sort of dominated on news, our lives. we have young people for whom they've only known us for war in iraq. so to mark the end of that is important. in addition, i thought it was important for the president because it is something that he said he would do during the campaign. it's something that democrats campaigned on in 2006 and i think to mark the end and make good, show that you're making good on a promise is very important. >> in your blog you say it was
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nice for the president to recognize president bush. they had a phone call the day that he delivered his remarks in the oval office. you added, though, i wonder if the current president acknowledged that the former president was right. i doubt it. >> the whole thing about that iraq speech was nice that he called the president. but the way that we got to such good shape in iraq was with president bush's courageous decision to do the surge. and i don't think that president obama wanted to acknowledge that in his speech, and i understand why because he was wrong on it. and i just thought it's my duty to point that out. >> your response? >> i think it was clear. the president also got attacked from the left for not pointing out the things about which president bush some would say lied. but i think the president felt it was more important, rather than one side or the other, to go straight down the middle and say we're getting out of iraq. that's what's important, to
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acknowledge president bush's role i think in a positive way i thought that was the right thing to do. it was not the place for a political approach. >> leth me talk about a number of posts. this is from the opinion section. and then, this. john? >> well, i like the first
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comments. i think that the republicans have had two rotten elections in a row, and it's really the pendulum has swung far left in the country. politically. but the country is still very much center right. so i think it's going to be a fairly big election. if you look at the turnout models, voters are much more excited about this election. if you look at all the different progress noss caters from charlie cook to larry to stew, they see this election moving dramatically towards the republican candidates. i think that it's a reaction -- all mid-term elections tend to be a referendum on the current president. let's face it, the economy is not doing well, hasn't had an uptick. people are angry, they're upset. the number one thing that the obama administration passed was the health care legislation which is exceedingly unpopular
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with voters. one of the number one issues in many districts. so you add that all in and it's going to be be a very good election. it's still going to be tight margins. republicans aren't going to get 290 votes in the house. so they're going to have to -- there's going to be a situation here where it's going to be very difficult to get major progress done. but perhaps that's what people want, less big government and spending. >> let me put another theory on the table. republicans pick up 20 to 30 house seats and gain four or five senate seats but do not gain a majority. what happens within the republican leadership in congress? >> you know, the expectations are pretty high. so i think that republicans will see that as a loss and i think the ramifications will be that there will be a lot of soul searching. did we do enough at the campaign level to get the right candidates in there? and that's a definite possibility because the democrats have a lot of money
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and they're going to spend it right now and there are some candidates out there who tea party candidates who might not be the best candidates to win in a normal election year. now, that being said, this is not a normal election year. i think a lot of those tea party candidates are going to win. >> let's remember, first of all, that a number of those same progress noss caters did not think president obama would be president. but i think there are three factors that we can't fully measure at this point. one, as john mecksed, is money. and we know that when it comes down to the end of a race, having money, democrats happen to have more money overall campaign by campaign than republicans the. obviously republicans will get a lot of help from outside groups, but money at the end of the day, how that gets spent is going to have an impact. secondly, while people talk a lot about the enthusiasm gap and the enthusiasm on the part of republicans, i think we should remember that that enthusiasm has actually been
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enthusiasm from folks in republican primaries against the republican establishment candidate. that's very different than the kind of voter that comes out in a general election. so again, i think right in we can't quite know how that's going to shake out when many of these candidates as you're already seeing, the nrsc has sent baby sitters out to kind of tamp them down a lit bit. those folks are going to have to move to the middle. how do they do that without upsetting the tea partiers? and the next thick is mobilization. i think the president did an excellent job at the press conference. i think he's fighting back. democrats have a better message of drawing that contrast and how that impacts democratic voters and getting them out in the next 50 or so days we don't know and you can't measure that in a pole. >> we'll get to your calls. you can join the conversation on line twitter.com/c-span wj.
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the front page of the philadelphia enyirer has this. . .
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>> say hello to christine o'donnell. >> isn't democracy wonderful? >> i think mike castle is one of these more moderate campaigners facing a conservative tea party challenge. >> supported by sarah palin. i think what he has done with
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this ad is figured out that you can't be nice. >> ranked paul tied in that
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race. >> again, that shows that these tea party candidates will really pull apart and look at some of the things they've said and want to do. one of the things you want to see in a campaign. trying to get out a positive message, it works. if you've got the money to do it, this is what you have to do.
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>> here is part of that. let's get your reaction.
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>> we got a lot of resistance very early. when you take on tough issues like healthcare or regular la torry reform where special interests are deeplien trenched. where the issues are so complicated and it drags on for a long time, you end up having a lot of big fights in town and it is messy and frustrating. >> the president seems to want to blame john bainer for his a againeda not working out very well.
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>> he disagreed on healthcare and cap and trade and the stimulus. the president has finally lately come up with a couple tax proposals that make sense. he wants to cut taxes in one area and raise taxes in another. the reason the president is struggling right now is that his a againeda doesn't work. the american people are coming up saying this doesn't work. g.o.p. leader tightly bound to lobbyist. you both read the piece? >> yes. it is obvious that under the
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leadership, we would go back to the same. this whole k street infa structure. that sounds a lotted like tom delay to me and what got republicans in trouble in 2006. >> isn't that what happened in 2002? >> not so far as giving out checks to tobacco lobbyists on the floor. it is not that we are blaming him, we are saying if republicans were in charge, they would go back to many of the same policies that got us in this mess. if you are truly interested in doing something for the american people, here is a place we can agree. we may disagree on some of these other things. from a policy perspective and a
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political perspective, this shows a lot of what happened and that republicans really haven't wanted to work with the president. joining us, good morning on the democrat's line. caller: good morning. i keep hearing the republicans say that they are going to create jobs. how can you create jobs when factuallies around in the city are going overseas. they keep saying elect us, we areng to create jobs. how are you going to help the
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working people when you won't extend unemployment. they have children to feed and homes. these jobs was already leaving america under the bush administration. they are trying to make it look like when obama got in there, the jobs were leaving all of a sudden. my niece is working for a firm that they are sending her to china and india to train people. in a few months, she'll be out of a job. >> thank you for the call. who wants to take that. guest: john boehner was a business owner that created jobs.
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president obama never worked in the private sector. if you talk to business owners, the assault and increase in taxes and the big worry that taxes will increase even more. there's a perfect example of this in the "new york times," you have this story about the 1099 crisis that will require every small business owner and every expenditure over $600, they have to fill out a form. do you know how much that will take for people?
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>> obviously, we disagree. we've gone through a period of deregulation. what's happening. toys are coming in from china. there's a point we have to say wait a second. some regulation is right. we won't say go ahead. i think some regulation is right. the question is how much is too much and how much is enough. remember that this president came into the office. $750,000 jobs were being lost per month. we are not creating the number of jobs we want to be. we are back up to creating jobs month by month. you can't say it is not working. i think the president
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acknowledges that. we have to turn this country around. >> i would make one note. when obama was sworn in, the unemployment rate was 6.9% and now it's about 9.6%. the president hasn't focussed on jobs at all. that's the beauty of america and the president should revel in
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being called a dog. >> when you have a member of congress calling from the chamber, that's a big shift from where we've ever been before some of the thing that's happen said and done go beyond the pale. >> he told us he fails to unite the country. he admitted he did not succeed in that area. >> then president bush really lost his way. dik cheney took way too much control of what was going on. we saw that leading into 9/11 which really should be a day of national unity and remembrance. so much of what we were talking about yesterday was division and
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how much deviciveness there is in this country. host: welcome to the program. caller: good morning. i blame most of the mainstream media for giving us this disaster. congress controlled the money. controlled by 20 # by the democrats. i get sick of any so-called republicans that sit there and don't bring that up. i question his credentials. he spends most of his time at msmbc. they give us this guy that has never run anything in his life. we'll get a response. thank yous bob.
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this is a big country. we have an economic down turn. people really hurt now in the country.
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>> including like the house. a former aid could you not take this and say they are also former staffers including legislation in washington. is this a fair piece? guest: i think so.
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he still likes to go in control of doing things. let's take a look at democrats. if you look at the things they have tried to accomplish. we are taking care of our children with conditions in terms of our healthcare some of
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the lobbies routinely calling for help. guest: you want help. i think heel say, look, if your job is creating the business, thank god for him doing that. they are trying the hardest to create jobs there will about an opportunity to repeal some of these terrible laws
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>> obviously being a lobbiest is not a very popular side of the country. they look at lobbiests as something that is useful. >> good morning. i think they should stop blaming for the jobs going on. this is both parties. i think the way not that the president is working on these
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jobs but the government section, it is not helping everybody. we have had socialism for years and lived in it. >> thank you for your call. trying to make it of choice.
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they believe this is been too much regulations under the changes they would like to make. it's a difference of philosophy. i think they are trying to focus locally on what is going on in people's communities the economy is a big issue.
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looking at how the changes have impacted the people. turning that into this spot. >> we should point out that the tag log o'line was, with policies this bad, who would blame them?
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you see in 2006 where the parties are in trouble. you see where it says, i don't know about president bush. the republican opponents, if you are going to vote for someone against president obama, you are going to vote against democrats not for them.
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>> we are in a political season where every candidate out there has their own make up, plan, message. in the environment where we have 9.5 perts unemployment, people are going to make the best argument that they can right now. they'll take a pole with what they are saying and try to align with that. that's how political races work.
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>> republicans are trying to make it about the president. this whole anti-business theme, repealing parts of the 14th amendment. those things are designed to stoek anger and fears and not talk about solutions or fears. if they feel they are not going to win trying to make a case for certain policies. they have to stay focussed on what they could do. >> the line for democrats in
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florida. caller: referring back to the articles you put on and a comment karen med concerning referendums. i think this election will be referendums out of control. when we voted in president obama, i say "we" as a voting member of the democratic party. i want a change. i felt like the banking industry, financial industry were in a large part responsibly for the recession we were in. corporate tax cuts was also
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responsibly. when john edwards was in a campaign, he set out to war. everything he set out to do, he ran into two things. number one, a swarming army of corporate lobbyists. host: we'll get a response. thank you. guest: a couple of points i would make to that. >> the problem is once you get to this place where the lobbiest are writing parts of the legislation or having too much influence by their giving and
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meetings quoted in this story. that's having a check on that is the right thing. secondly, one of the hottest issues we'll be talking about is taxes. we'll see a real contrast with the idea of what do we do with the bush contrast. we are saying the trickle down economic will not work. that's a difference philosophy, we have to extend those tax cuts. apparently, they think it will still work. host: do you think sarah palin
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will run for president? >> yes. >> newt gingrich? guest: probably. guest: gingrich, no. palin, no. i think she enjoys making money and giving speeches far too much. she's found this role as sort of an entertainment politician. barber runs. barber has become outside of the formal structure, the kind of king maker and important force within the party. host: your theory on this being the cruellest month for the president. how so? guest: it was a bad month for him. starting out with his wife taking an expensive trip to spain and wondered into the mosque mess and made that a huge
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issue. they left with the poll number that's were devastating for him and the democrats. i think the problem that the president is having right now is that he is not really connecting with his voters. i think he's out of sorts with huge number of voters. he's not really focussed. when bill clinton was president, he said we are going to focus on the economy. i think this president has been focussed on anything butt the
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economy and i think it has hurt him. a lot of these stories have made these situations worse. >> you can read the theory in the newspaper. a look back and a look ahead and then this morning in the "washington post." this sunday's take, the mayor's job not a sure thing. the upcoming chicago race has been about emanuel.
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washington has discontain. in chicago, you really have to be there all the time it is
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almost something unimaginable. guest: one of the points i would make about chicago and that this is true. the role that the economy and race is playing, you can't under estimate that. people are hurting. when we are hurting, we turn back to fears and this sort of us versus them. chicago, i thit dynamics are pretty complicated. in many ways, chicago is america's most important city. guest: i could say the same
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about new york. >> chicago native and new york native. this prosgram is carried live on the bbc. we welcome viewers there including harry who is on the phone. good morning. the democrats went into the house with a majority of 80. they have the gains in november. they have the majority of one and then will have a majority of 21. several friends of mine have said how longly is it that these 50 gain also happen?
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host: we'll get a response on that what is going on with former prime minister tony blare? caller: many are row testing his choice to take back the kingdom. we believe that the united nation they are not quite right in causing a public deception. host: thank you for your call and fortuning in. 50 days before the election. guest: it is and it is fascinating what is going on in
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the uk. that could be a lesson of things to come here and republicans getting in control. what is happening is people and families are rationing back their spending and finding the paradox of thrift. personally, people are trying to be thrifty and that doesn't have a good impact on the economy. host: the president will be in four cities including wisconsin, nevada, ohio and pennsylvania to set the a againeda for democrats. does that impact at all for
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republicans? guest: i think it does. if we go back to one of the factors, remember that president obama is still very popular with the democratic base. having him out there and getting folks out there. it's important in terms of appealing to moderate voters who are frustrated. making a case and a good job of it. this election season like we saw in 2008 is very unpredictable. within the next day, it suggested that people actually trust democrats. the next day, we see a poll and we are back to even. people will have a little more faith in some of the polls.
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there's a lot yet to unfold in the election. host: from florida, welcome to the conference. caller: i have several things here. the first one for you. i wish you and others would persuade brian to spring for a couple $100 bucks to have name plates to use. when you put them on the screen, they are a little too cheap. politically, bob kind of stole my thunder a little bit.
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this is about 90 other things. they just wall owe when they talk about the clinton administration and how great things were in the country during that time. the republicans need to remind the whole country that republicans were in power in congre congress, both houses during the time of the great clinton economy, plus the fact that president obama keeps hollering about the fact that when he was iing ago rated in office, things were awful. they were two years of democratic control. i wonder if karen would give us
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a little bit of a picture of the economy in 2005 and 2006, not the war but the economy. the last years that bush had the republican congress. thank you for the time. we have going on right now in this country, the greatest conflict of interest that had been perpetrated. that is the public service unions. who in the world are they going to contribute to but people who will raise their salaries and increase their pensions to hire more public people. who is that?
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>> the contest is on, the best name mralt contest. you are the one who started it. guest: i always say that the republicans are the ones that made him a great president. if it wasn't for republicans dominating, bill clinton wouldn't have signed any of those things. i was listening to an ad. for the teacher's unions. the public service unions giving
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money so that they can increase their pay is one of the great scandals out there. when you talk to voters they talk about how under bill clinton, they had more money in their pocket. when president obama came into the office, he had a surplus. they had a massive deficit. i remember getting my $300 check when he gave people that money. that's long since gone. instead, we got a war. yes, when president bush came in, there was a deficit over two years in controlling congress.
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the war in iraq was draining resources both here and at home. the president's policies are working. when we go back to the control, we should see those deficits go right back up. guest: we should see that go up. guest: under the bush administration, we were under creating jobs for years and years. so you are not accountable for what happened at the end. the previous years, the unemployment rate was right after 5%. guest: look what happened.
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we said good ahead. we'll trust you. guest: as the caller pointed out, when they got control of the congress, the economy went down hill quickly. just look at the bush administration's record. pointing that out. recovery november. two things we want to bring to your attention first. a quote from a lesser known president. it's all bush and the republican's fault. and then there is the sudden fame. falling into the trap by attacking him last week. the president made himself look desperate. comments on all of this. guest: the president is trying
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to draw a contrast. if we had a speaker boehner, this is what it would be like. one of the most important things that the democrats -- it is not about george bush but about the policies that many of the republicans who serve and are asking to be returned to power. if you want to go back to deficits and the kind of spending that says trickle down economics is the way to go, that's your choice. host: congress is back this week, how much will they accomplish? guest: i think they will accomplish many. let's hope they accomplish
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plenty as well. host: with a large group. the democratic strategist both blogging on the hill. the u.s. news and hill report. we talked about it. we are going to take a short break whchlt we come back, we'll turn our attention to the situation on the ground in afghanistan and looking at those working two and three jobs just to make ends meet.
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>> you posted a story about training troops to take over security. can you elaborate? >> yes, over the past few weeks, u.s. military officials repeatedly briefed including letter by called well about the nato training mission in afghanistan which aims at 305,000 national police and army by october next year. i called it in my story a daunting mission. in order to reach that number
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because of the very high attrition rates. in order to reach that 300,000 plus target, they are going have to recruit 141,000 recruits between now and next year, which is practically the size the army is at the moment. host: joining us on the phone, reporter for the press. there is a little bit of a delay. we are now about 10 months before what the white house is calling a transition period and getting stablt on the ground seems to be more difficult, if not any easier. why is that?
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guest: we had troops in areas, where the taliban was first organized in 1994, they stepped up operations nearby and other areas around. the marines seem to be suffering a number of casual tis in neighboring areas where they have seen significant rebound. they are focusing at this point and that accounts for the st
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stabity operation. this whole thing could be called a hearts and minds operation. this is going to be a very difficult thing to do. host: we have a graph this morning. the front page of the "new york times." as you look at this map of afghan tan, you can see the darker areas of the extreme or highest risk in 2003. as we go down, you can see in the south part where it has grown over the last seven or eight years. let me begin with you. why is south afghanistan such a difficult area for u.s. troops to breakthrough? why have they seemed to been trenched in this area? guest: the largest of the ethnic communities here and is the
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heart and soul, the core of the taliban. many feel estranged from the central government in kabul which they feel is run by other ethnic minorities. that's an area that had been chronically under developed. that's an area where war lords held sway and tribes felt that they were not being given their piece of the pie after the taliban had fallen. what is some what distressing is if you look at that map, you'll see areas much further north also beginning the steps towards major security problems.
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other provinces that have seen an increase in violence in the last 6-8 months. those are not areas with huge populations. and with the movement of this population that carries with it the serious risk that they could expand into other groups which also feels estranged from the central government. >> how does all of this make it more difficult? >> it's extremely rare looking back at history, it's extremely
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rare for anyone to have a defeat against them in their homeland. the former state department officials. the condition flikt especially in its recruitment and training. the afghan national army remains overwhelmingly soldiered and officered by tagics and this is a problem in the pashtun areas. you kill them in one area, they
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pop up in another. guest: that is interesting because as we approach the new policy adopted at the end of next year. i think there is going to be a gathering behind the idea that we need toscale back the operation and make it more of a country terrorist operation. i haven't done any reporting about this but talking to people around town and think tanks and other people, there does seem to be a problem. host: it looks like the problem is worsening there. one of the points pointed out is that 30% of the country 368
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districts, unarmed government workers cannot travel the area safely. how safe or unsafe is it there? guest: it is a bit of a crap shoot. there are areas where people can go in relative safety. relative safety in afghanistan means you have more than a 50% chance of not running into any hostile people. it discourages people from really moving about. 15 or 20 men in a province can create the severe destablization. it takes days for them to be moved.
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they get the idea that my lord, this is not a safe area. perhaps that area is a lot safer than it seems. we live in a risk intolerant era. what it means is that elections can't be held. it means security costs go up trying to protect people working with ngos and government projects. we saw the same thing in iraq where the mission becomes more and more expensive. one thing i'd like to add to that problem of countier terrorism. some when self serving but some what valid too. the key to a country terrorism campaign has to be across the border in pakistan.
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it remains entirely by other mi parts can be eliminated. . .
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the corruption, there's an ongoing debate both here and elsewhere about corruption, and basically it turns on the question of how much is reasonably, how much are you reasonably able to combat and how much of it is simply inherent in the way things are done in this part of the world, pat nadge, favoritism, changing attitudes that go back centuries? also, if you take an anti-corruption drive to its logical conclusion, you'll wind up without allies. >> robert reid joining us from
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afghanistan. thanks as always for your time this morning. >> thank you. >> shawn, based on what you have been writing about and what robert reid is saying, this is a long-term issue, long-term meaning many, many years. >> well, an italian general who briefed the media in washington, who is the head of the police training mission, nato's police training mission and ho has had experience fighting organized crime and corruption in his own country in italy, says it's a generational issue. i also want to say this about corruption. in a way, i think the issue cuts to the heart of the due walt of u.s. policy. on the one hand you have the drug enforcement agency and other u.s. agency that is are fighting corruption in afghanistan. on the other hand, you have the
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c.i.a. which we read is paying members of the afghan government. now, if you were a government official taking payments from a foreign government, i mean, that is the definition of corruption. right? and, i mean, the objective of those payments is to influence, to get information and influence for u.s. policy makers. so i mean, is the kabul government an ally or is it a client? i think there is a duh walt there and i think the corruption wind issue is a window into it. >> our guest here is shawn waterman, formerly with the united press international. now covers cyber security for the washington times. his article on the training is available on line at the washington times website. we'll get to your phone calls in just a moment.
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you can also join in on our twitter page. or send us an e-mail. can you walk through the process of how these afghan troops are being trained? >> well, there are different programs for the army, different ones for the police. there are different training centers around the country that are staffed by u.s. and nato troops and by contractors. there are a variety of programs . the recruitment programs, the big push that general caldwell instituted since he took over last year is actually literacy. this is a country with very low literacy rates. you can't -- the people that i spoke to, literacy is the key to training because you can't really train people if they can't read. >> maryland, good morning, on the democrat's line with caller: good morning.
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several years ago, we heard a lot about a group called the northern alliance. and i think that some of their representatives would come over and talk about their vision for afghanistan. could you tell me whatever happened to them? and are we developing relationships with them also? thank you so much. host: thank you. familiar with this? guest: well, the northern alliance was the main anti-taliban group prior to 2001. and, in fact, the murder of its leader was took place the day before september 11th. most of its, many of its leaders are now or have been
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senior cabinet ministers in the karzai government and, i mean, it was a tadgic led group. and matthew hodse, for many observers, really, the northern alliance is the core of the current afghan national army. host: last december, the u.s. military assessed that there are about 25,000 taliban terrorists or insurgents in afghanistan. earlier this year general petraeus saying that u.s. and nato forces have killed almost 3,000 including about 235 commanders. i just want to put those numbers on the table. guest: well, body count is not a good way to do courpt insurgency in my view. host: because? guest: because for every guy you kill he has cousins, brothers, children. you know, you don't, i think
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it's the view, not my own view. it's the view of counter insurgency experts that is not an effective metric. host: shawn waterman, a graduate of kings college. caller: good morning. i'd just like to make a comment and like to listen to the response. that idiot in florida that was going to burn the koran, and they made such a big threat over there, burn our flag, burn our bibles. do they have enough education over there to even think for themselves? will we ever be able to accomplish anything over there? they're not like the iraq. it seems like those people there are just like a bunch of animals. they're backgrounds or what's the problem? and i'll get off and listen to you. guest: well, i'm not quite sure
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how to respond to that. i think, you know, the country as i said with very high rates of i will literacy. with -- ill literacy. on the other hand, it has for many years a history of a vibrant political culture. i think there's a lot of -- i think there are many opportunities in afghanistan for the development of a vibrant political culture and there are democratic traditions there. i mean, there are also very anti-democratic traditions. host: so what is the ultimate mission in afghanistan? guest: you'd have to ask the u.s. government about that. i think that's an issue. i think, you know, everyone sort of -- i mean, the straw
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man is that we are trying to build a everysonian democracy in afghanistan and everyone says no we are not. but if we are doing institution building and nation building, and it seemed to me that counter insurgency strategy is really predicated on that because you have to have a partner, you have to have a afghan army, institutions that people respect and feel protected by. that is a generational commitment. host: do the afghan people, based on what you wrote this past week, feel more protected, when afghan troops or soldiers or military personnel or police officers are protecting their neighborhood? guest: that's a very good question. there is a column in a rival washington newspaper this morning by david ignatius which looks at some of those questions very interesting. host: we'll go next to john joining us from boston. good morning. caller: good morning. host: please go ahead, john on
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the democrat's line. caller: yeah. i have a simple solution to solving the bin laden problem and also causing al qaeda irreparable harm. host: and that is what? caller: the government could declare bin laden dead, take the award off his head and then leave the move to al qaeda to try to disprove this and they will make a mistake and they will be demoralized. we could just sit and wait for them to make the next move and they would do something to try to disprove something we claimed and they would make a major mistake and solve the problem. host: ok. shawn? guest: i think the first thing i would do is issue some sort of recording off him making a reference to contemporary events. i mean, it's true actually that the chain of custody of these recordings is a probably the
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most important to the weakness in the vail of secrecy that surrounds bin laden's location. perhaps an idea worth considering. host: we talk in our first half hour, 45 minutes this morning about a piece by ted copple that we with are basically overstating the response. he was asked specifically this. >> i think capturing or killing bin laden and 74 hereie would be extremely important to our national security. it doesn't solve all our problems but it remains a high priority of this administration. host: shawn. guest: well, i think it's undoubtedly true that it is a very high priority.
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i think the ko ppel piece is interesting. what sort of a threat does terrorism pose to the united states? it was the view of many in the previous administration, including perhaps most notably the vice president, that there was an exstenshl threat. that is to say that the very existence of the united states and its way of life was threatened by terrorism. i personally thought a lot of people don't share that assessment. i think overreaction is the terrorist's greatest weapon. host: we'll go to michael next on our republican line. alexandria virginia. good morning. caller: good morning, gentlemen. i tell you, just listening to the past few callers, and to this gentleman. and i appreciate your background and respect. but i think that in all of the education that a lot of these folks have, especially in this
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kind of administration, the majority of them if you look at their background, they're all academics with zero experience, just like this current administration. and it is not a high priority to catch bin laden. it is not. evidence proves that. >> host: michael, what is the priority? caller: let me tell you what the priority is is for mr. obama to become all things to all men globally and get along. because he wants, if you notice his priority is the world stage and not our economy. his actions prove that. not the multiple speeches that he has given. and so that is the reason why. now, please think about this. to your audience. here, this man goes to georgetown university, covers up all the christian symbols. he has not found a church. he is the only president in the history of our country that i can recall in my reading that has never found a church, a christian church to go to. he says he is a christian.
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he sat in a church for over 20 years in a pastor who believes in black liberation theology, a markist. now he snubs the national day of prayer and then turns around and has a white house dinner on ram dan. host: we'll stop you because you put a lot on the table. caller: a lot of that is above my pay grade. but if president bush had his tardiness in the white house. host: and this president has attended the national day of prayer that we cover. but there are a number of issues you pointed out. we appreciate your comments. we go to warren. actually, lilly next from ohio. caller: thank you for taking my call. i'm responding to the gentleman that was talking about what's the problem. there's a problem that's not being covered.
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afghanistan is the highest above sea level in the world. the people there can breathe thin air like up on mount everest easier than our people can. they don't need sophisticated weapons. all they have to do is throw robblings down on soldiers and climb higher up above until our men collapse. and that is a simple thing and yet it makes a big difference. we rely more on the drones which kill more civilians. because they aren't as accurate. and it just undermines our winning the hearts of people in the involvement in an effort to grow. host: thank you. caller: well, geography is destiny and the terrain in afghanistan is among the most inhospitable in the world. it's true.
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and it's also true that civilian casualties in afghanistan has been a huge issue. the use of u.s. air power, general stanley mcchrystal promulgated new guidelines for u.s. troops to try and reduce the number of civilian casualties. general petraeus has tweaked those but still a lot less use of air power than we saw prior to last year and i think it's a good thing. host: let me go back to what you wrote last week. and ask you, specifically, what kind of reaction these police officers and troops are getting in afghanistan, these soldiers from americans training them. guest: well, that's probably a question that's better asked on the ground, steve. i mean, we -- these briefings, you know, are pretty upbeat. even the italian general who he
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talked about a couple of generations was very upbeat about the quality of his forces and the quality of the work that they're doing. so -- but to coin a phrase, they would be. wouldn't they? you know, you'd have to get down there on the ground. and i think when that's done, you know, it's a pretty mixed bag. you see reports of these guys smoking hash shish and shaking people down at checkpoints. on the other hand, you know, in a number of different theaters they've been taking the fight to the enemy with their u.s. and nato allies. so it's a mixed picture. really, that question, you know , robert would probably have been a better place to answer. host: but you gave a good answer. thank you for your answer. caller: mainlyly apply to iraq
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but also in afghanistan, and i thought of it a lot earlier. i'm not a military person but it's what i call the kill cost ratio. that is the cost of the weapons systems versus the kill power and ability of that weapons system. we seem to be totally out of the loop on that system. rpg or a roadside bomb, very inexpensive weapons systems and easily trained users. they can destroy millions of dollars in equipment where as we use, as this lady called before, mentioned the drone that costs millions. and may not even take out its intended target. how do you fight a war like that particularly against a country that apparently doesn't want to be nation-built? host: thank you. guest: and excellent question. i think it does encaps late the dilemma that an insurget with an ied that costs a few dollars can take out a much more expensive piece of u.s. hardware. and, of course, you know,
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tragically expensively trained u.s. and nato personnel as well. host: let me conclude with what might be the obvious question as you write, this is a daunting task for u.s. and nato troops to train about 140,000 afghans. how will we determine whether or not we've succeeded? guest: well, that is a very good question. i mean, i think part of the problem is that when you create a target like this, the 305,000, the pressure is really on the people doing the work on the ground to sacrifice quality for quantity. to make sure that they're meeting the targets that their commander in chief has set for them. you know, even if that means squeezing people through the gate as it were who perhaps in an ideal world wouldn't pass muster, wouldn't get over the bar. so i think the question ot metrics. and of course even beyond the sheer numbers of the board
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numbers of the security forces, you know, the bigger metrics are about security in afghanistan. and as the "new york times" reports today, we don't seem to be doing so well on that score. >> host: that's the very front times of the "new york times." thank you very much for being with us. guest: always a pleasure. thank you. host: please come back again. unemployment in the u.s. underemployment. what does it mean for those of you who are either out of work or working two or three jobs to make ends meet? that's the focus of our next discussion here. it is sunday morning, september 12. we're back in a moment. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010]
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>> here's a look at some of our politics programming today. first, democratic massachusetts governors debate at 6:30 p.m. later in new hampshire senate republican primary debate at 9:30 p.m.
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>> i would propose that we build a wall, we secure that border however we can do it. and we do it quickly. there's no reason why we can't. but in the absence of the federal government stepping into its constitutional role of providing security along the border, the states ought to be able to do it. i support arizona and the
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arizona law. i have from the beginning. i've read that law and it's the state's sovereign responsibility to protect its citizens as well. now, one of the other candidates in this race and one of the first debates did not support the arizona law and that was bill bening. i think we differ on that issue. but going forward, we've got to have a tough immigration policy that employers who knowingly employ illegal immigrants are punished and we deport people not here legally and make sure we have a solid immigration policy to allow immigration occur in the way it was meant to do, to bring people into naturalization when they begin the process legally. host: our topic, the economy and the jobs outlook. we're joined by heather, a senior economist. good morning. thanks for being was. guest: good morning.
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host: let me begin by telling our audience we're dividing our phone lines between those of you who are either unemployed or underemployed. we want to hear from you specifically during the next 40 minutes or so. some headlines on this sunday morning. the detroit free press, will i ever be able to retire in millions of americans confronting uncertain futures. and u.s. poverty on track to post a record gain in 2009. guest: certainly. not only is poverty likely to post a record gain but incomes perhaps may even see record drops in their declines. we saw that between 2007 and 2008. but 2009 was the worst year both for poverty and for income growth. so it's not going to be good numbers when we see them next week. host: why aren't companies hiring, large and small? guest: because the labor market
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is still mired in the great recession. we saw some strong job growth happening in the late spring, march and april of this year. but since then, we've seen job growth taper off. a lot of it is tied up with the fact that when you have a recession that starts with the financial crisis, they tend to be deeper and more protracted. we've had a hard time kind of pulling out of this recession. we've had a hard time encouraging companies to invest and to make those kinds of investments that would lead to job creation. so all of that combined has led to a lack luster unemployment situation. and we've seen that for quite some time now. >> host: the official unemployment rate is 9.6%. in nevada and michigan it's in the low to mid double digits. but in reality people say it should be 10, 11, 12% across the country. guest: the official unemployment rate just measures whether or not during the week of the month the survey
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responding said they were at work last week. but if they weren't, were they actively seeking a job? and available to work? and so what that doesn't take into account is that you've got millions of folks who are working part time but would prefer to be working part time -- or folks who are maybe a banker who is now working as a retail clerk, under employed relative to the skills that they have. host: this is the sentiment of our interviewed this morning for a piece, i'm in a major retrenchment. i'm going to lose my home in another three months or so if something doesn't come through. guest: certainly. the numbers are grim out there for working americans. there's no way to sugar coat it. you've seen unemployment lingering for quite some time. and, unfortunately, you've seen a lot of folks out of work and seeking a job for record lengths of time. we've never seen so many people who have been out of work for so long searching for a job since the end of world war ii. host: the piece in the national
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journal, back to basics. looking at a number of individuals who are out looking for a job, those under employed. the belief that average americans must manage their finances more responsibly is a poufrl cord. you saw the pole? guest: i had taking a look look at that. it's fascinating. they talk a lot about the financial stuff but they also talk a lot about what it is that american people want the federal government to do to get the economy back on track. and, interestingly, some of the things they want the government to do include making significant investments in infrastructure and the other kinds of thing that is would both help get our economy back on track but also get people back to work. host: again, we want to hear your stories. heather is our guest. ra mona from st. louis, missouri. you call yourself underemployed? caller: no. i'm unemployed. i've been unemployed since january of 2008. host: and what did you do
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before you were laid off? guest: i worked in the scrap metal business and my background is in community and economic development. host: how are you surviving today? guest: barely -- caller: barely. my husband took early retirement. so we are liing off of $775 a month. host: and what's the job market like for you personally and in st. louis in general? caller: things are very, very tight in st. louis as it is across the country. for me personally, i'm 58 years old and although i am a professional, it's just not a lot out here. 1200 resumes sent out and not even a response. i've totally exhausted my employment. i'm a 99er. so i'm twoers. so what i would like to know is for what does it look like for
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individuals like myself who are now long-term unemployed but not only long-term unemployed but also not old enough to retire and have multiple skills but there's just nothing out? in order for me to stay connected to my industry, i volunteer. i just work in my community volunteering. and then i think we should also take into and factor into the discussion the disparities in the workforce. for instance, in st. louis only 17% of african americans are employed in the workforce. so there are many issues that are contributing to the high number of -- the high level of unemployment that i'm just not hearing discussed in the debates. host: thank you. guest: that's a hearing tale
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that you're telling. and we know from the numbers that that's going on in families all across america. one of the things that you said that you were doing was volunteering in your community. one of the policies that we've talked a lot about that i think could really help would be to expand our national service programs. you know, folks on both in the sort of the boomer group but also young people who have been hit hard by this unemployment and firms that have not been willing to bring them back into the labor market. one thing we could do is expand our national service programs enormously and take advantage of the enormous talent of older workers who have so much to give and so much to teach and use their talents that way, while also training the next generation. that could be something that we could do. but the other thing that it made me think about is that for so many families out there, it's, you've been in your community for a long time. unemployment is high where you live. it's hard to sort out whether
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famslies should be considering moving from one community to another. that's a policy we haven't started to address but maybe we should be thinking about. although it's tough because i don't want to suggest it would be easy or not socially dislocating to have people sort of pulled from their community where they have their church and schools and where their kids and grand kids live near bi. but it is something we should be thinking about. host: one of our viewers saying companies are not hiring older workers. younger workers will work for less and longer and have less health care costs. greg is joining us. he is underemployed from pennsylvania. caller: thank you for taking my call. that's unemployed. host: go ahead caller: i became disabled in 2004, and since then watched this economy start to collapse. and i also had a small business on the side, so i had an
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entrepreneurial avenue that i was able to develop. and then right now, being disabled and with no prospects out there, and my small business which is media development has just fallen flat because there's just no employment for anybody right now. their advertising bummingts are slashed and it's real difficult to get anything. so i'm in my late 50s. so i'm facing a whole host of barriers that i don't know if i'll ever get back into the workforce again. and the only thing that's keeping me afloat is the fact that i get disability and own my own home. and i'm just barely hanging on like everyone else. but i see most of the people that i know in their late 50s are really worried about their jobs, if they're employed. and those that are unemployed
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are just seriously in trouble right now. there's no hope for their retirement. and we're back to survival. i mean, if you can make any type of income right now, you're better off than most people. but like the previous caller, i don't know what to do. i can't move. i mean, you mentioned maybe going where the jobs are. i'm lucky owning my own home. that's what's keeping me alive. host: and you're getting how much per month? in unemployment benefits? guest: i'm a 99er so i exhausted mine a while ago because my employer, previous employer could no longer accome date me. so trying to find a job that where you need accommodation right now is difficult. thanks for taking my call. i'll listen to for your comments offline. host: thank you, greg. guest: well, these are really tough stories. one of the thing that greg mentioned is that he had been a
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small business owner. so to go for that, but i do want to come back to the disability and aging issues. there's a piece of legislation that's passed the house that's been held up in the senate that would provide new lending fund for small businesses and tax breaks for small businesses that could help. we know that small businesses continue to struggle with access to credit because of the fallout from the financial crisis. so that could at least move us in the right direction. it probably wouldn't be, it wouldn't solve the whole problem but certainly it is an important step in the right direction. it would be great the see the senate take that up in the not too distant future. the other issue -- both callers have talked about being older, and facing these really tough economic times. and we know from the data that older workers have been hit the hardest. they have higher unemployment than they've had at any point in the post world war ii period. and as we've seen 401 k values
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fall, record unemployment, we're also many folks are having this conversation about whether or not we should be increasing the retirement age or cutting social security benefits, which seems to be exactly the wrong direction for policy. we should be doing what we could to make sure that these older workers who may not be able to find jobs again like the ones they had in the 2000s have some sort of graceful thransition into retirement that acknowledges that the financial crisis wasn't their fault but this was because of the challenges that our economy has faced and rethink the situation the social security discussion is going. host: if you're underemployed or unemployed, join our discussion. the numbers are on the bottom of your screen. steve is joining us from
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colorado. you describe yourself as underemployed. why so? caller: because i had my own business building customized homes and it didn't slow down. it just quit. so i had to get a job that went from $30 an hour down to $9 an hour. the current job that i'm doing now. my opinion on this whole thing is the government has gotten way, way into the -- in the way of people doing things that they do. i'll give you a real quick example. let's say my neighbors got some chickens. and the chicken lays some eggs. my neighbor can't sell that egg to me because of the government being in the way. the government is doing just exactly what they want to do. the they want to make everybody dependent on the government instead of getting out of our way and letting us create the
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jobs themselves. i mean, they've gotten way intrusive. if you walk around, you tell me anything that the government doesn't have a say so in your life. we don't have a say so in our lives. the government has gotten completely in our way and it is destroying this country and i've got one other real quick thing. you were talking about social security. ok, everybody seems like they're getting demonized because they want to get rid of -- they want to privatize social security. well, if people really look at it, if they privatize social security, the government can't spend your money. they've gone in there and they have stolen every last dime of the social security money. people have to realize that the government has just put that into the general fund. if you look at what the
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government owes us, if the government would have never gotten into our social security, we would have more than enough money to take care of everybody under social security. so i suggest that we privatize social security and get the government out of our business. host: i'll stop you there. you can respond to that. and i want to share but again what is in the detroit free press on this sunday morning. the first of a two-part series. he talks about social security and retirement in general. so many of these people even mover more reliant on social security. guest: certainly. let me take these in order here. i really do appreciate your comments and one of the things that you noted was that you built customized homes. and as the housing market crashed, you lost your job. and one of the thing that is we know about what happened during
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the 2000s is that we allowed a housing bubble to develop. an economist, there was a small cadre of them that kept saying time and time again if we allow this to develop it will crash and it will cause the crisis that we're seeing now here. and the government instead of doing what they needed to do to smooth that out or to make sure that people weren't having access to these subprime loans where companies were encouraging them to borrow more than they could afford because of a lack of regulation of the morning market, that is indeed what caused the problem that we're in here today. so i think that we need to be very careful when we think about what the role of government is. there's a lot of things, when you buy a home or refinance, you sign these piles of papers that it's hard for folks to understand that. and moving forward on the consumer product safety commission in getting a new chair there and focusing on how we can make sure that this doesn't happen again i think is an important role for government regulation. so let's keep that in mind. because if we hadn't have had
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the collapse of the bubble then we wouldn't be here today having this very sad conversation about high unemployment. on the second issue, i mean, you know, it has been just a tragedy what we've seen to people's 401(k)s, but also, steve, as you mentioned, the collapse of pensions for some workers, people who worked their whole life and who assume that's going to be there. but, because of a bankruptcy or something late in the day, those benefits are cut even though they were, it was a contract that that worker had with their firm. you know, that is the danger in some way of too much privatization. you know, the 401(k)s are great. you do get to have a choice about where you put your money. unfortunately, what we've been watching lately is watching it fall. and that really puts millions of american families at risk. the nice thing about social security is that it allows us to take that risk and spread it across everyone and give everyone a guaranteed minimum so folks don't end up in
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poverty when they can ill afford to at the end of their life when they may not be able to work or need a little time to retire and spend time with grandkids. host: heather is our guest. sasha has this comment. look at your 401(k) on september 2008. what happened to your social security, what happened to your union pension. pete ser joining us from new york city. how long have you been out of work? caller: ten years. i was disabled. but afe comment and a suggestion. host: certainly. caller: i'm a research scientists, cancer buy ologist. and since i've lost my affiliation to medical research institutions, i no longer have access to the professional literature. now, it turns out that the
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professional literature is published by scientists and institutions whose work is primarily supportd by the united states government. which means our tax money. what happens is that when a person has a paper that they want to get published, they go to a journal and the journal makes them turn over their copyright. and then, the journal takes the copyright and sells -- and sells their journal either on line or in a paper version. to people who can afford it. now, the subscription to one journal runs certainly in most cases in excess of $100 a year. for a person to do serious research, they need access to anywhere between 50, 10, 200 journals. so it's not something that an individual can do. host: i'm going to cut you off because it's a little bit off
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topic in terms of the unemployment situation. do you want to exclose the circle on this? caller: i'd like to suggest that the united states claim imminent do dome yain. we should make these, this information which is produced through our tax dollars, available to all americans on line because it should be free on line. host: thank you, peter. quick comment? guest: well, i think that's an interesting idea. i was happy to have him mention the infrastructure proposals. i think that's something we need to think about putting more money to rebuild our infrastructure. host: this survey which was published this last week in the latest edition of the national journal, the question of 1200 randomly selected individuals. and when asked the question which is closest to your view of the proper role of government in the economy, 39% saying that the government is not the solution to our economic problems, 33% saying
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the government should play an active role in the economy, 28% saying the government must play an active role in regulating the marketplace. and 3% no opinion. guest: well, it was a very interesting format. surveys in all how the questions are written. and i think it's interesting that sort of the two bottom groups there do see some important role for government in the economy. what the poll shows as you see time and time throughout it is that folks see an important role, that they see a role for government to lay the foundation for economic growth. i mean, that's why talking about infrastructure at this moment in time is so important. that only the government can fix our roads and fix the railways and fix the airport tarmacs and all that. so allowing our infrastructure to allow businesses, large and small, to transport goods and services and to get our economy humming again. and you see that through there. what you also see is a tension,
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because a lot of folks are concerned about too much government intervention. but there does seem to be a consistency that folks want at least that basic investment so that our economy can hum. host: and in that survey, 70% of those respondents saying that they have a relative or close friend who has either lost a job or has been affected by the economic slowdown. that's 70% in the national journal survey. peter is joining us. jushed employed from lakeland -- underemployed from florida. what's your story? caller: thank you for having this segment. i think this is a great segment to have that we don't see in any of the other sunday morning news shows. host: thank you. caller: i think i can close this loop with the previous caller's. social security. you know, this is all a bipartisan disaster. remember nafta? remember npr for china? now we're underemployed or lost jobs. look at the tearive with
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mexican goods. scrap the treaties. the jobs will come back and fund social security with the stuff we're importing. and i'd love to give your guests two examples of what's going on. the first would be educated people. let's look at price waterhouse in tampa, florida. they're taking 600 accounting jobs and putting them over to india. where are these guys going to find these jobs? take a look at whirl pool that took tarp money, back in jul, closed the plant in indianapolis with 10,000 workers, they're moving it to mexico. put tearives on everyone of those driers and washing machines. the jobs will come back. that's the sucking sound that we're seeing and it's draining social security as well. put the tarives on and you've got a win-win situation. host: thank you. heather? guest: well, thank you for that comment and question.
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another thing that comes out in the poll is that americans do want us to see a policy focused more on exports. i appreciate your concern about putting tariffs on imports. but a way to go about it is building up our export capacity, building up the industries that can export goods and services overseas. the administration has had a focus on that. i think it can be lot bigger and bolder, making sure we can help american businesses to make the kinds of investments to become an exporting powerhouse like we used to be. and a piece of that puzzle is making sure that the u.s. dollar is set -- is at the kind of level that is consistent with what our economy is producing. we've seen in recent years that the dollar has been too expensive. it's been overvalued which has made it hart hard for other countries to purchase our goods and services. it's an easy step to move forward in terms of improving
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our export capacity. host: we're talking about the u.s. economy. all of this coming out in a week in which we'll get more nferings on poverty in this country. the number of people who are on poverty, on track to reach a record number. we'll get those figures later this week. one of our viewers saying at some point people must wake up to the fact low interest rates, easy money from the federal reserve to wall street banks caused the bubble. and there's this from robert from pennsylvania.
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guest: it's a sad tail for older americans right now. i mean, this story. host: and some may argue late 50s is not old. guest: that is true. i was thinking of the labor force because yes, that's the high end. certainly, you know, 59 is the new 30. but certainly it's rough out there for folks. and i think we are seeing a lot of employers not making investments in these workers. an earlier caller made the point or i think it was an online, that young workers are cheaper. in reality, you've actually seen record high unemployment among young workers as well. you've seen employers not to hire at either end, the young person who doesn't have skills yet or the older worker who may have more health care costs and the like. and we really do need to be focusing our policy attention on this. there's not much that the federal government can do to
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require private businesses to employ those folks. so a good way of thing f thinking about it is what can we do to increase the kind of employment. and it comes back to me that one idea would be to really focus our intelligence on some of the national service programs that could at least pull in some of those folks and give them opportunities to make use of their skills. host: lee rogers has this point of view. guest: certainly. and those investments laid the foundation for economic growth. they create new knowledge, they create the kinds of resources, the energy or roads or transportation networks or what not that allow other businesses to thrive. host: linda joining us from north carolina. how long have you been out of work? caller: i've been out of work since 2007. host: and how old are you? caller: i'm 55 years old. host: and what's the job market in winceston salem?
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caller: it is not very good. it is not great at all. as far as looking for employment, i was laid off in 2007 and i worked in an office in the furniture industry. and when i was -- i was laid off due to jobs going overseas that my employer, they started sending manufacturing going to china. and, as a result, our plant's closed. and then they started laying off in the office. so rgs as a result, i was fortunate enough to get under the trade act that i could go back to school and my education was paid. but, unfortunately, when i received -- after i received my associate's degree i started looking for employment a semester before i graduated. and now, you know, i've been looking for employment
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religiously since may, since i graduated. and i can't find any employment whatsoever. i have put in resumes, i have passed out resumes. i have done online applications. i went into the medical field, medical office administration. i was advised by the unemployment agency and this college to go into medical office administration. andically not find employment at all. i'm very distressed by this. fortunately, my only consolation is that i'm married and my husband is still employed. but still, we have a morning and we're trying to put our son through college. and it's very frustrating. because, like one caller pointed out, the older generation is not -- if you're between 55 and in your late
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50s, to mid 50s, you cannot find employment. host: i'll stop you there because as you were phoning in we also had this from tina. so to linda's story and to tina's story? guest: this is the reality out there for millions of americans. you know, i want to pivot, i want to use these stories as a way to pivot to talk about what this means in the broader sense. you've got so many folks out of work, underemployed. and one of the narratives that we've heard a lot is that we talk about a lot, this has a broad effect on economic demand. we have so many folks who don't have jobs or who are underemployed. they're not contributing to our economy in the same way that they would if they were fully employed and not contributing to their tax dollars if they were fully employed, which increases the deficit when you have a drop in tax ref new.
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and this is the gap that we keep looking to need to fill. this lack of demand. if we could get demand back up, then you would see businesses needing to make those investments and needing to hire folks like linda and tina and peter and the rest that you need to sort of have that boost in demand. so you can see how it's a bit of a vicious cycle with more unemployed people the demand falls and then you have more unemployed. we need to stop that cycle, which we have. and now we need to ramp up and push it in the right direction. but we need to continue having government spending to fill that gap. americans simply can't do it. host: our focus, the economy and unemployment. greg joining us from buffalo, new york. how long have you been out of work? greg, are you there? caller: heather, good morning. guest: good morning. caller: listen, give me a second with steve here. i'm going to scold steve again about all this twitter crap.
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you're ruining the program, steve. you're taking phone calls and then you look at your twitter board, and then you throw a twitter on top and then the phone call got ruined and you confused you're confusing us. host: we're only trying to add to the discussion by giving people an opportunity to e-mail or twitter or phone in as you're doing right now. so the forum is yours. go ahead. caller: all right. and let me just say quickly, let me just remind you this is a call-in show. how many times a day do we have to hear from c-span junkies? now, heather, can i ask you a question? isn't it about time that we start the hillary for president campaign? we need to start now. hillary, please let's go. it's time to put this -- this guy is a disaster for this country. i'm looking at you laughing. it's not a joke. ok? corpsings, businesses, little
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pee -- corporations, businesses like me, we're being destroyed. now, hillary for campaign, i'm kicking it off today. let's go. guest: that's a great comment. you know, hillary was a fantastic candidate. i think she's busy in the state department. i don't think that this administration has been a disaster. but i do appreciate your fervor for mrs. clinton. but, you know, certainly i think that anyone who would take in over the white house back in january of 2009 would have -- was faced with this massive economic disaster. and these are tough times and tough choices having to be made. but i also appreciate your focus on the fact that we need to target our economic policies on making sure that working and middle-class americans are the ones that are growing and thriving. and every policy should be looked at through that lens. is this going to help to grow our working class and our middle-class families? is this going to help improve
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living standards? we're going to get new data and in all certainty is going to show that incomes have fallen yet again. last year between 2007 and 2008 they had the largest one-year percentage point decline since the end of world war ii. i think it is quite probable that we see a number just as bad this year. and we need to target our policies to making sure that the middle class is growing and thriving. so i whole heartedly appreciate that sentiment. host: and we had this one comment. greg, you may not like it. greg, the mortal enemy of the twitters. let's go next to maryland. good morning. caller: good morning. host: what's your situation? guest: i'm unemployed but i do side jobs. i'm a plummer. so i go out here and do side jobs and make cash money. i think we need to get off of the system to where if america is in a depression or recession, that we think that
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the country stops. it's like an animal. when there's no food, animal or plant. when there's no food, the animal hiber nathes. we need to go into a hiber nation mode. maybe that means we need to have policies where under certain circumstances, it's not so easy to lose your home. we need some counter measures. i think it's great what obama is doing. it's the private -- if the private sector does not want to provide jobs, does not want to lend money, then the government needs to blossom and help people. it's an excellent trade-off. thank you very much. host: thank you. guest: thank you. i think that's a great sentiment. certainly we need government to step in and fill in that gap in demand. this is a unique kind of recession, this great recession. it was cues f caused by a financial crisis. we haven't seen a recession like this since the great deprecks. it was global. we haven't seen that since the great depression. and because so many families
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lost their home values and unemployment is so high and interest rates so low, there's no place for demand to come from but continued government spending. so i think that's an important thing to keep bearing in mind. host: when do you think we'll see a decline in the unemployment rate? guest: we've seen the rate come down a little bit. it had gotten to higher than it is now and it's come down a little bit. i think that it's going to be some time, though, before we see the kind of unemployment rates that we've become used to in the 1990s and the mid 2000s down around 4%, 5%. unfortunately, i think it's going to be a few years before we get back there. and what we need to see is a continued focus on making the investments to get people back to work. host: heather, thank you for your time. please come back again guest: certainly. host: we of course will continue the conversation tomorrow morning on c-span in